The Nunavut Broadband Development Corporation (NBDC) was created by the members of the Nunavut Broadband Task Force in November of 2002, as a result of the recommendations in the SIvumuqpallianiq - Moving Forward report. NBDC was tasked with implementing many of the recommendations in the report – including finding funds and a process to ensure a broadband network was built to serve the public in all 25 communities.
NBDC was created to help ensure communities, Inuit organizations, businesses, community organizations and individuals not served by existing government networks could get connected to broadband at affordable prices.
NBDC set out to:
- ensure a broadband infrastructure is built, and provides quality service to all Nunavummiut at affordable prices;
- help develop capacity in every community to support broadband services locally;
- test various broadband applications, and implement those that meet local needs and promote efficient, effective use of communications;
- develop and ensure delivery of a long-range training plan for people to learn to develop and use Nunavut-specific communication technologies effectively;
- measure usage of broadband in Nunavut to ensure that Nunavummiut keep pace with opportunities being presented in other Canadian regions.
NBDC was incorporated under Canada Corporations Act Part II, November 1st, 2002 as a Not-For-Profit Corporation. NBDC’s corporate structure was designed to meet Industry Canada’s Broadband for Rural and Northern Development (BRAND) program requirements in order to apply for infrastructure development funds - the first significant federal infrastructure investment in broadband to serve the Nunavut public.Organizational activities included:
- Nunavut Broadband Advisory Committee (comprised of members from the Nunavut Broadband Task Force) provided guidance from incorporation through to the election of the first full board;
- Initial staff of David E. Smith (Ottawa) and Lorraine Thomas (Iqaluit) were hired in January 2003;
- NBDC undertook a membership drive, developed the organization, created the board structure, launched a communication campaign, conducted community research, consulted with Task Force members, and promoted its mandate across all of Nunavut.
NBDC succeeded in becoming a community-based organization that had wide support from across Nunavut from community members, private sector, public sector and Inuit organizations. Outcomes included:
- NBDC was recognized by Industry Canada as a qualified institution eligible to raise funds through the BRAND program;
- Hundreds of Nunavummiut from across Nunavut signed up to be members of NBDC, (via fax) and 34 people ran for the first 7 elected board positions;
- On November 18, 2003 the first full NBDC board was elected by members from across Nunavut in person and by fax.
Elected board of directors, November 2003:
- Clare Basler (Cambridge Bay),
- Adamee Itorcheak (Iqaluit),
- Robert McLean (Sanikiluaq),
- George Metuq (Iqaluit),
- Billy Palluq (Clyde River),
- Art Stewart (Cape Dorset),
- Patrick Tagoona (Rankin Inlet),
- Reuben Murphy, GN Sustainable Development (Pangnirtung)
- Richard Paton, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. (Iqaluit)
Funding to support the development of NBDC was provided by:
- Dept. of Sustainable Development, Government of Nunavut
- Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Government of Canada